PRO14 Doubles Central Revenue To €20m In Two Years

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29 May 2018

Turnover at rugby’s Pro14 tournament has doubled to more than €20 million (£17.6m) over the last two years as two South African franchises have joined the competition. And it will seek further expansion next season according to an interview piece with commercial director, Dermot Rigley in the Irish Times.

Over the last nine months the league’s 152 games drew 1.2 million fans. Its turnover from ticket sales, media rights and commercial deals, including headline sponsor Guinness, was more than €20 million, double what it was two years ago.

It is about three years since the Pro14 became independent of the company that runs the Six Nations and Lions Tours. The league won’t say how profitable the business is. However, Rigley points out the surplus earned after costs is returned to the 14 clubs themselves.

Pro14 is the only club rugby tournament with participants from the both the northern and southern hemispheres. South Africa’s Toyota Cheetahs and Southern Kings took part for the first time in 2017/18. Mr Rigley indicated that the league hopes to attract more South African teams. He sees the country as most likely to provide the competition with scope for expansion in the near future.

“South Africa is one of the juggernauts of world rugby and, not just that, it is also a very strong commercial rugby market,” Mr Rigley said.

Signalling its intention to grow the country’s role, the Pro14 has added Jurie Roux, chief executive of the South African Rugby

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